A new scheme has been launched in Marlow to help prevent the increased loneliness experienced during the current pandemic.

PhoneAFriend, which is a non-profit organisation that was founded by ex-Borlasians who are based in the town, was released nationally for individuals to use in April 2020.

A spokesperson from the charity said: “Since speaking with community leaders and Marlow Town Council, it is apparent that there is an understandable want for community-led action.

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“For this reason, we have created a community-focused feature for PhoneAFriend which allows members of the same community to sign up with a specific code - For Marlow, this code is MARLOWLOVE.

“When signing up, people can choose as to whether they would like to speak preferentially with people in their local area or from further across the UK.

“We have had a number of matched calls set up in this way and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive which is heartwarming to see.

“We wanted to use Marlow as the pilot area for this feature in order to give back to our local community.

“Already we have had a great response from local organisations and businesses that we have approached.

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“We have received the support of Buckinghamshire Council and we are endorsed by Marlow Town Council.

“If you, or someone else you know, that has limited access to the internet, you can call 01494 841700 and one of our team will help you set up your account.

The charity has confirmed that several people are already volunteering.

To get in touch with PhoneAFriend and to take part in the scheme, email them on info.coronaunity@gmail.com or visit their website, www.coronaunity.org.